UCTech Slack

UCOP has recently purchased a systemwide license for the team communication tool “Slack”, which enables real-time collaboration between IT professionals both locally and between UC locations. The URL for the UC instance is uctech.slack.com (we will refer to this Slack Team as 'UCTech').

This Help Center topic will serve as a primer for OIT staff & Computing Support Coordinators across campus who want to learn the Slack basics and how UCI will participate in UCTech.

Please note that UCTech is currently available to OIT staff & CSCs only and is free to use.

Slack@UCI

A number of divisions in OIT, as well as various IT departments across campus, have already embraced Slack. These groups are welcome to keep their autonomous Slack Teams but are encouraged to join the UCTech Slack Team and 'set up shop' there as well. They can decide whether or not to import their current team's channels & users into UCTech, or just start from scratch. See the "How do I...?" tab for more information.

Slack allows you to create either public & private channels, enable a whole host of webapp integrations, and there's even a WebAPI you can use to extend it's capabilities.

The hope is that UCTech will bring the CSCs and OIT closer together, as well as foster new collaboration with the other IT folks across the UC system.

If you're brand new to the world of Slack, start here. The "Getting Started for New Users" guide will help you get your bearings.

Each campus will have at most 2 'volunteer' UCTech Slack admins. Mike Caban (OIT Help Desk Manager) is the UCI Slack Admin. Please open a ticket for the OIT Slack Team should you have any questions.

Getting Started

First things first, you should talk to your team and devise a plan for using UCTech Slack. There are a couple of things worth considering before you dive in:

  • Decide if you want to create Public and/or Private channel(s).
    • By default all channels are Public, meaning anyone can see what's discussed, can search for your channel in the directory, and join them without asking you first.
    • Private channels are invite-only.
  • Decide on naming conventions.
    • We suggest that when you create your channels, you prepend the names of your channels with uci- followed by an acronym for your department (e.g. uci-kfs).

Once you're ready, head over to the UCTech signup page. Use your @uci.edu email address to create an account. Once you're able to sign in, here's how to proceed.

  1. Modify your Profile and add (UCI) to your Last Name. This'll make it easy for folks across the system to identify you (your name may not be as unique as you think!)
  2. Before creating a channel, you should first search the channel directory to see if one for your team has already been created. If it doesn't exist, you can select the New Channel button to create it.
  3. Again, channels are Public by default. If you want your channel to be Private, please open a ticket and ask to assign your ticket to OIT Slack Team.

How Do I...?

Slack has an incredibly comprehensive Help Center, so please consult their documentation if you have usability questions.

The scope of this FAQ section (and for that matter, OIT Help Desk technical support) will be limited to technical questions where administrator assistance may be required (such as revoking user access and requesting webapp integrations).

Can I merge my current team's users & channels into UCTech?

Yes. Please open a ticket for the OIT Slack Team to discuss. Slack has great documentation on how the export/import function works.

The Import Tool has built-in granularity and will allow you to import certain users and channels (or all of them if you'd like), create accounts & send invitations, disable the user accounts by default, and so on. If a user account already exists (meaning they share the same @uci.edu address), it will map the accounts. The same goes for channels.

After the import, we recommend you rename your channels by prepending them with uci-. In addition, you should tell your users to modify their Profiles and add (UCI) to their Last Names.

The tool will also let us Roll Back the import if you change your mind about what you imported. However, there are a couple of caveats regarding the Roll Back:

  • You cannot remove imported users.
  • You cannot remove imported channels (only the messages and attachments in the channels themselves are deleted).

If you want us to manually remove any imported users or channels, open a ticket for the OIT Slack Team.

Keep in mind that some teams may decide to not import channels (or all of their users) into UCTech. It's up to you to decide your level of participation in UCTech!

A member of our team has separated. Can you revoke their access?

Yes. Please open a ticket for the OIT Slack Team.

Are there plans to enable Single Sign On (either using UCI Google Apps or UC Trust)?

Currently there are no plans to enable SSO, but we will definitely share that news in our What's New? section when it becomes available.

Is there a charge to OIT to use UCTech Slack?

No, OIT will not recharge your department or school to use it. Participating UC's are contributing yearly subscriptions to UCTech Slack from April 2017 – April 2018.  The CIOs will review the results and evaluate how to proceed next year.

What billing plan is UCTech enrolled in?

The UC System is paying for the Standard Plan at a cost of $12/user/year.

What's New?

Check back often for timely announcements about new features!